Filed under: Action, Incarceration, Southeast
Action report from Fight Toxic Prisons on lockdown demanding release of prisoners in the midst of COVID-19 pandemic.
At 5am EST on April 17th 2020, a person locked themself to two concrete barrels in front of the mansion of Florida Governor Ron Desantis. The demands are the same as they have been for the past month: all incarcerated people must be immediately released during the covid19 pandemic, and in the mean time they must be given protective and sanitation supplies, and free and full access to communication.
In the past weeks, community members warned the governor of the public health disaster that would take place inside and outside of so-called correctional facilities if nothing is done to prevent the spread of covid19. There have been several call-in campaigns, as well as a car demonstration last week urging the same demands.
— IWOC Gainesville (@iwoc_gnv) April 17, 2020
Today’s demonstration happened after other avenues were exhausted, and after infection rates have been climbing daily in Florida’s prisons, jails, and detention centers. Infection rates are over 10 times higher inside than outside, and this will only worsen if nothing is done.
One supporter on the ground was arrested before 8am. Shortly after, the fire department blocked off visibility to the scene using tarps. The person locked down was then given no other protective equipment besides plastic goggles, and the fire department proceeded to cut into the exterior of the barrels using a chisel, before recklessly cutting the person out.
@rondesantisfl The majority of incarcerated people in Florida are not serving life sentences, but failure to act amid this pandemic is tantamount to issuing a statewide death sentence. If you fail to act, these deaths will be on your hands. We demand releases now! pic.twitter.com/8fk0imF7l3
— FightToxicPrisons (@FightXPrisons) April 17, 2020
This action is not being claimed by any individual or organization, but rather was taken on behalf of free world people in solidarity with incarcerated people during the covid19 pandemic. We will continue to escalate until action is taken to stop this preventable disaster from worsening.
To support these demands, contact Governor Desantis:
To donate to the bail fund:
paypal: [email protected]